Rights of Foreign Domestic workers in Singapore
It is all over in the news, the way employers treat their maid in Singapore. Highlighting some of the recent events, it involves physical abuse, denying their right on holidays and holding to the due payments/salaries. Just ask yourself a simple question, do you want your boss to treat this way? No one like to be treated this way. Making someone’s life miserable because you own their salary is an inhumane act. Little act of kindness or small words of appreciation won’t take away the fact of being an employer.
Your behaviour towards a foreign domestic worker is completely up to your own reflection towards your personality. The Rights of foreign domestic workers are not yet a part of an employment act, but rights are enforced through different laws and regulations. Courts are working on it and complaints are passed through the proper procedure and any guilty person is punished according to the law.
If you’re still unaware of the rights, ask agencies to provide you with the list or go through the points mentioned below.
· Weekly Rest Day
Everyone needs a rest, a day or time for themselves so, don’t take that right from your maid. In 2013, a law was passed through which any foreign domestic worker is rightfully entitled to the weekly rest day. In another case, the employer is bound to compensate this day.
· Work Permit
Workers are only allowed to work with the employer who has their name on a work permit. So, this formality is obligated for every employer and you cannot hire any maid without providing work permits for them that is generated by the Ministry of manpower.
Accommodation should be safe and protective of sun rays etc. The ambience of the room should not affect the hygiene. It should contain all the necessary equipment’s like book safe, a chair, mattress, pillow and a blanket too. These are all basic needs and should be provided by the employer instead of cutting a cost from the maid’s salary.
· Food Requirements
The ministry of manpower obliges every employer to provide enough food to their domestic workers. As a human act, you should provide the same amount of food that you think you need. However, any helper may have any restriction on food due to the religious belief or dietary plans, so, make sure to fulfil that too.
· Medical Insurance
Emergencies and accidents are the part of life and if you provide proper medical assistance to your helpers, it will be great. Buy a great insurance plan because if anything unfortunate happens, it will cover all the cost of medical expenses.
Besides all the rights and employment conditions set by the Singapore government or the MOM, the domestic workers are also protected by the countries. There are some additional requirements set by the embassy and you are obliged to obey them. So, before hiring a maid/helper, make sure that you are aware of contract conditions and lawful processes that are followed. All of the conditions should be part of the contract and all the parties should keep a copy with them.
Apart from the regulations, you are a human being an adult so behave like one. Appreciate all the hard work of your helpers. They are called helpers because they are supposed to help you around the house and no human being is allowed to treat another with abuse. Treat them with the best behaviours, ask your children to respect and also keep and never drain out their efforts because it won’t do any good for you either. Now, be aware of your own behaviour and try to be kind in every situation.